Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Marching orders.

Military style is a perennial sartorial winner, and this A/W is no exception - it is back with a vengeance, ready to transform your wardrobes into a sea of khaki, sleek tailoring and powerful silhouettes. I dipped my toes into some army-esque styling recently on a shopping trip..

Parka, Shirt & Bralet (underneath) - New Look; Leggings - Miss Selfridge; Shoes - H&M; Clutch - Primark; Necklace - New Look; Bracelets - Topshop; Cuff & Ring - Nelly.com

Despite previously being firmly opposed to wearing leggings as pants, I loved this look. I literally cannot wait to do a similar one because I felt so fierce! The parka made the leggings totally acceptable, and the necklace collar stopped the white shirt being boring, while the wet-look texture of my leggings (remember how cool these were like four years ago?) is more reminiscent of sleek army pants than time spent at home in sweats..

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Friday, 12 October 2012

Life Update - Gap Year!

If there are any regular readers, you might be wondering why I am not raving on about my new university, or complaining about freshers' flu.. But I am actually on a gap year! I have taken a year out from education, deadlines and stress to relax, enjoy life and grow as a person. For now I am working like crazy to save money for the biggest part of my year out..

In January I go travelling around South East Asia for five months!

I am so excited to be going - I will be volunteering in two schools as well as backpacking and sightseeing in my favourite part of the world. It won't come cheap though so as well as working as much as possible I am limiting my spending as best I can, which means barely any new purchases.. 

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Done my hair up real big beauty queen style.

International obsession Lana Del Rey is one of my icons, so it's little wonder that I tried to replicate her retro glamour for a night.. This look was for a meal out with my friends on results day, and the photos were taken in my garden as I tried to be as fabulous as Lana.

Dress & Shoes - New Look; Clutch - christmas present from parents; Earrings - Versace for H&M.

I am in love with this vintage style dress, especially the print and the bow-tied back. The earrings are some more favourites that rarely get worn, since they are so heavy! I also attempted something new here with my hair - a voluminous, backcombed half up style that one of my friends commented was very like Lana - and am loving the results. Expect to see more hair like this..

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Edgy florals.

One of the most tried and tested, timeless combinations is the cute dress with a leather jacket - something about the contrast of sweet girliness and tough leather makes for a perfect outfit. Of course with my new (faux) leather jacket this is going to happen a lot in my OOTDs, and here is the first one.

Dress, Jacket & Clutch - New Look; Creepers - Amazon; Socks - Urban Outfitters; Earrings - Miss Selfridge; Ring - Topshop.

I put my own spin on this combination with a hi-lo dress with a cute daisy print and my current shoe obsession, my leopard creepers and glittery socks. AW'12 is shaping up to be a season where we embrace our inner goth, but in a slightly more romantic way so of course a biker jacket was a necessity. I am really into this trend because I love darker colours and richer textures for autumn/winter, and because I am currently in lust with crosses, skulls and studs.

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Tuesday, 2 October 2012


I spent the majority of last season wanting to be a vintage siren, and wearing pastels, pencil skirts and anything retro like it was going out of fashion.. and I won't stop this season! It just needs to be toughened up, updated and given the AW'12 edge. This outfit is taking you all back to August - a slightly nostalgic re-visit to my SS'12 style.

Jacket - Topshop; Bralet - Miss Selfridge; Skirt - H&M; Shoes - New Look; Bracelet - Pandora; Ring - Swarovski; Necklace - Tiffany's.

Exposing your high-driff was the cool girl's way to flash some flesh, and I finally plucked up some courage and wore my bralet with a pencil skirt. I would still do this now, but since we are heading firmly into autumn, I will require tights and a warmer jacket! I love the tonal effect of the look, as well as the way it is thrown off with the electric blue pumps - they kick a bit of personality into this bourgeouis lady.

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Biker girl.

Every so often I try to be model-like in one of my OOTDs. It's pretty solidly unsuccessful since I am awkward on camera and about a foot too short to actually be a model, but it's always fun. I am catching you all up on previous looks that I have rocked on my infrequent outings - this one hails from a time when the sun was still vaguely in the sky.

Shirt & Jacket - New Look; Shorts & Ring - Topshop; Tights - Primark.

I also have a tendency to abuse free photo-editing software online.. These slightly dreamy shots were taken in a local park, a location that I adore. It was a fairly simple, slightly rock'n'roll outfit combination of a classic biker jacket (a key piece this season), simple white shirt and some neon hotpants. Just out of shot are my beloved leopard print creepers.

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Dress me, I'm your mannequin.

In the last month or so since I posted (ooops) I have been out and about a few times in some varied outfits.. I will warn you, most of these are simple little Instagram shots, but they will give you a flavour of my recent stylings and I will be back to proper OOTDs soon!

These were my favourite recent looks - ranging from pretty to grungy and all the way back again. Follow my instagram  (@babydolltara) for more like this, or just keep your eyes on the blog...

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Monday, 24 September 2012

London Fashion Weekend.

Despite my money-less-ness I hit London Fashion Weekend at Somerset House on Thursday 20th September. I am really disappointed to say that my camera died so I don't have many photos, and that I couldn't buy very much, but I literally had the best day.

I explored all of the stores and drooled over their contents, gathering inspiration for my newest looks. I picked up on anything free (hello, Diet Coke, coffee testers and kinder buenos), as well as gathering postcards, catalogues and business cards to put up for fash-spiration! I abused the free photo ops as well - so much love for Canon cameras and Jean-Paul Gaultier for Diet Coke for these masterpieces..

I also managed to meet VV Brown, who dwarfed me, as she had a little pop-up VV Vintage store. She looked casual, fashionable and was absolutely lovely.

This was also the best outfit shot of the day - 100% me. Bold pants, a little bit of studding, some discreet skin flashing and my clompy, comfy, beautiful creepers.

After spending hours wandering around in a fashion heaven and taking in the DAKS mini designer catwalk (gorgeous), I listened to the Twitter Panel talk, collected my Showbag and went for a wander around the Strand.

Mulberry fabric tote | Velvet pocket tissues | Elizabeth Arden moisturizing cream | shopstyle.com pocket mirror | Self tan applicating mitt | Compeed blister plasters | Lavazza coffee | Jean Paul Gaultier Diet Coke night time | Label M sea salt hair spray | Colgate whitening toothpaste - All free as part of my Shop + The Lot package!

While surrounded by gorgeous designer items and stunning pieces I was really finding it hard not to spend money, and I will admit I caved a little..

 Gold cuff & double gold ring - nelly.com

The end of my day consisted of a yummy frozen yoghurt, followed by a cocktail at TGI Fridays and finishing up by stumbling upon Covent Garden before taking the bus back home and collapsing in a fashion coma.

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Saturday, 22 September 2012

I am a shameful excuse for a blogger.

I am literally kicking myself right now because it has been so long since I last posted! I hate making excuses, so I will keep it to this - I have been working like crazy to save money (including some painful 11-hour days) and basically crashing every time I get home.

But now I am used to my work habits I am missing my blog, and all of yours so I promise to try and get some more posts going.. I know I was in the middle of holiday blogging but I don't know if I want to continue with that after such a break, so I might just pick up with my life now. 

Or you guys tell me what you want to see me post about?

Love and kisses, Tara xox

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Toraja Part Two.

Picking up on the third day of my visit to Toraja, we were in for a slightly simpler one around the town.. We hit the biggest local market, where it was livestock day. I tried really hard not to empathise and settled for just taking photos and gawping like a tourist.

Dress & Belt - New Look; Shoes - Primark; Earrings - Forever 21.

This is one of my favourite outfits from the whole holiday because the dress is so light, pretty, floaty and flattering. The super cute tomato print just screamed SS'12, and it was perfect for visiting a market! I got lots of compliments from the locals - always a boost to your self esteem. This was one of the days I felt most myself too because I had my hair (half) down and some lipstick on!

Market day.
New-found love for buffaloes awakening..
The most impressive horns of the day.

On Day Four the cultural trips recommenced and our Torajan odyssey continued with Londa & Tampangallo. Getting out there was easy enough and the sites were incredible. They were both cave burial sites that were creepy in part, yet respectful and fascinating. Getting back from the sites was a different story - the limited transport meant that we ended up walking about 10k before hitching a ride on a passing cement truck..

Top & Skirt - New Look; Shoes, Bag & Headband - River Island; Necklace - Accessorize; Earrings - River Island.

I loved this outfit too, especially the light and floaty skirt. The print clash was one of my staple style statements for this holiday and I enjoyed mixing the strong tribal print with a softer floral one. Not going to lie though, I felt a little awkward posing here by the burial caves.

First glance at Londa.
I guess they do it a little differently here..
The tau-tau are ready for their close up!
Inside at Tampangallo
Standing guard?
The intrepid explorer surveys her route..
Love and kisses, Tara xox

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Toraja - Part One.

This next destination is going to be spun out into several parts, since we spent 6 days there and there was just so much to see and do! Toraja is an area, like a county or something, that has a lot of tribal history and tradition, making it probably the most visited place on the island of Sulawesi. That doesn't mean it was overrun by tourists though!

Arriving on the first morning, fresh (but not with it) off an 8 hour night bus the first thing we noticed was how much less developed it was there in Toraja. We were staying in Rantepao, and it felt like we were the only tourists around! We weren't quite, but it was close.. And there wasn't even a 7-eleven! We spent the first day resting, aka mooching around town to recover from the night bus.

Top - Topshop; Skirt & Belt - New Look; Shoes, Bag & Bracelet - Primark; Earrings - River Island.

My pink maxi has finally been taken up (thankyou mum!) & was christened on holiday. First of all I paired it with a neutral batwing top and a casual topknot for a simple, breezy holiday look. In a strange way I found myself settling into the 'less-is-more' aesthetic here, and not minding being covered up..

Gorgeous fruit snack.
The view from the hotel.
My favourite mie kuah (noodle soup) for lunch!
This is almost too photogenic..
Day Two in Toraja was a little more hectic - we had organised a day trip to see traditional houses, grave sites and a funeral ceremony. It was stunning weather again, and it was almost too picturesque in places. I'll admit, being shown burial sites is a little strange, and so is sitting in at a funeral.

Skirt - New Look; Shirt, Bag & Shoes - Primark; Earrings - River Island.

I wasn't exactly sure about what to wear to a Torajan funeral, so I covered up even more.. This time I styled my maxi skirt with a black shirt and simple accessories. The skirt was a big hit with the locals at the funeral!

Traditional Torajan houses, with temporary wedding structures.
Stunning countryside.
A cave burial site, complete with wooden carved figures (tau tau).
I won't make you guess what happened to this poor buffalo..
The cutest kids in traditional dress for the funeral.
Love and kisses, Tara xox